Yale School of Architecture (savanna)

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    when fall thoughts loom...

    By savanna
    Aug 5, '05 4:34 PM EST

    The end of the summer is approaching and my thoughts have drifted more and more frequently to the fall studios. Now that I'm in my last year, I get to have a go at the advanced studios. This fall's batch includes:

    Glenn Murcutt
    Alan Plattus
    Peter Eisenman
    Leon Krier
    Jeannie Gang
    Brigitte Shim
    Joel Sanders & Diana Balmori

    I happen to be a big fan of Murcutt””he was one of the first architects brought to my attention after I learned what architecture was. He's based in Australia, however, and isn't likely to be around much. Jeannie Gang, of Studio Gang/O'Donnell in Chicago, seems really interesting. I wonder what kind of a person she is. Brigitte Shim, of Shim-Sutcliffe architects in Toronto, looks to be a materials-sensitive crafts woman””which is great, but the forms her firm generates aren't all that compelling. I've heard that Diana Balmori is not the best of teachers, and while Krier is a probably a genius I'm not really into his shtick. Alan Plattus is more of a planner, a member of Yale's permanent faculty, and planning means group work, which I'd rather avoid. Working in a pair is fine, but groups are difficult. Eisenman evokes strong reactions in everyone””people seem to love him or hate him. What I like about him is his dedication to teaching; he's at studio every week (maybe even twice a week) and he eats lunch with his students before rounding them up into little group discussions. He really cares about pedagogy, which I think may be more important for a student that the content of the pedagogy itself. A great teacher will provide more intellectual fodder than mediocre one, even if their subject is not your favorite. Is Eisenman a great teacher? I don't know. But at least he's there.

    In any case, I'll decide whom to vote for after I hear what they have to say. Admission into advanced studios is done using a lottery system. Each student has a certain number of points to be divided up among the possible options. The more points you award, the more likely you are to get into that studio””theoretically, anyway. There are strategies. If you give all your points to one teacher and then don't get in to their studio, for whatever reason, you've basically said that you like all other studios equally and will end up in the least popular one. So loading points in one place is not a great idea.

    Last semester I missed the lottery and wound up in the least popular studio. I won't let that happen again.

    I found this crazy image to share of construction in Korea:
    Bamboo scaffolding.


    • archidose

      FYI: Gang split with O'Donnell, so now it's just Studio Gang.

      I haven't met her, but I've only heard good things about her.

      Aug 5, 05 5:18 pm

      wow i didn't know shim would be at yale this coming term.

      Aug 5, 05 6:25 pm

      please tell bob to go out and get new people.

      Aug 6, 05 5:11 pm
      Cheyne Owens

      I had a friend at IIT when Glenn Murcutt co-taught a design studio. He was there every design studio and would stick around after class until all of the projects were reviewed. I heard only great things.

      Aug 6, 05 8:26 pm

      Brigitte Shim is cool, and she's Jamaican just like me!!

      I was at Glenn's masterclass at Uni Newcastle in 2001, a brilliant brillant man and i guarantee you'll be able to sit and listen to him for hours

      the bamboo scaffolding no worry flexible yet strong, there is a rather famous image of the petronas towers with bamboo scaffolding all around - to give you an idea of their versatility

      Aug 7, 05 10:16 pm

      ya, they use bamboo scaffolding exclusively in Hong Kong, regardless of bldg size...

      Aug 8, 05 12:42 pm

      fucking yale elitists, jesus christ! Go take the eisenman class so you can add something else to your bragging list. Or better yet, skip them all, and go take a course at a shop school so you can actually apply all that scholarly knowledge I hope you paid up the ass for.

      Aug 8, 05 6:39 pm
      paper tiger

      you are a bitter bitter man/woman. jaja.

      Aug 8, 05 6:57 pm

      Ya, that was kind of bitter, oh well, they had it coming.

      Aug 8, 05 7:07 pm

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